LONDON — An audiotape purportedly by high-ranking Al Qaeda official Ayman Zawahiri warned the United States on Sunday that it would pay a high price if it harmed any of the detainees it is holding at Guantanamo Bay in Cuba.
"America has announced it will start putting on trial in front of military tribunals the Muslim detainees at Guantanamo and might sentence them to death," said the voice on the tape, which was broadcast by Dubai-based Al Arabiya television.
"I swear in the name of God that the crusader America will pay a dear price for any harm it inflicts on any of the Muslim detainees," the voice said.
Al Arabiya identified the voice as Zawahiri's. It gave no details.
"We tell America only one thing: What you have suffered until now is only the initial skirmishes. The real battle has not started yet," the voice said.